Each year at General Assembly, an award is given to recognize a person or group for their work on the cutting edge of mission.
2018 Award Recipient: Dr. George Sabra
Professor of Systematic Theology and President of the Near East School of Theology (NEST) in Beirut, Lebanon
The recipient of the Award in 2018 will be Dr. George Sabra, Professor of Systematic Theology and President of the Near East School of Theology (NEST) in Beirut, Lebanon.
In the Middle East, Dr. Sabra is recognized as a theologian, teacher, preacher and church leader. He brings clarity, openness, faithfulness and a concern for the truth and for the future of theological education in the Near eastern region. NEST seeks to be a centre for interaction and formation of Evangelical thought, in order to further the role of the Church in society. To that end, it engages in reflection, research and discussion concerning issues of peace, justice, human rights, inter-religious dialogue and the environment.
Dr. Sabra has promoted Muslim-Christian dialogue for many years, and will be speaking on the rise and acceptance of political and religious extremism as one of the more urgent matters before the church today.
Dr. Sabra received his Bachelor of Philosophy from the American University in Beirut, a Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, a Master of Arts in Medieval Studies from the Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto, and a Doctorate of Theology from the University of Tübingen, Germany.
The Dr. E.H. Johnson Memorial Fund was established in 1981 to continue The Rev. Dr. Edward “Ted” Hewlitt Johnson’s commitment to a global view of mission and to extend the horizons of that mission. He lived his view of and commitment to mission through service with his wife Kitty as missionaries of The Presbyterian Church in Canada in Manchuria and as Secretary for Overseas Missions. He also became involved in ecumenical agencies covering many aspects of mission. When Dr. Johnson was elected Moderator of the 95th General Assembly, mission in all its variety and aspects marked his service in that office.
What is “Cutting-Edge Mission”?
Read more about “the cutting-edge of mission” in this Presbyterian Connection newspaper article (Fall 2017) by the Rev. Glynis Williams, Associate Secretary, International Missions.
For Service on the Cutting Edge of Mission
In making the award, the committee desires to recognize both the person and the church or organization with whom the person works, with the understanding that God’s mission is incarnated in relationships with sisters and brothers.
The recipient delivers an address to commissioners and guests at the luncheon. The address is made available in print and is posted on the website. The recipient often makes time available for meetings with leaders in the wider church and secular society and with congregations.
Begun in 1983, the award recipients comprise a list of distinguished church leaders, both in Canada and countries around the world. Our award winners in the last several years have been Dr. Elsa Tamez, Dr. David Pandy-Szekeres, The Very Rev. Dr. John Dunlop, The Rev. Nangula E. Kathindi, The Rev. Dr. Clifton Kirkpatrick, The Rev. Dr. Setri Nyomi, Ms. Karuna Roy, Dr. Ernie Regehr, Dr. Mercy Oduyoye and His Excellency Archbishop Elias Chacour.
Previous Award Recipients
Dr. Cindy Blackstock
Executive Director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada
Dr. Bernard Sabella
Executive Secretary of the Department of Service to Palestinian Refugees (DSPR) in Jerusalem
Canadian Council for Refugees Conseil canadien pour les réfugiés
Accepted by Loly Rico (President) and Janet Dench (Executive Director) on behalf of the organization
Canadian Foodgrains Bank
Accepted by Don Peters (Board Chair) and Jim Cornelius (Executive Director) on behalf of the organization
Rev. Dr. Abraham Berinyuu
Campaigner for Disability Rights; Champion for Ethnic Reconciliation
Sister Eun Sook Han
A Founder and Member of the Diakonia Sisterhood in Korea
Boarding Homes Ministry
Accepted by Rev. Rodger Hunter, Chaplain
Rev. Dr. Terry LeBlanc
Founder, North American Institute for Indigenous Theological Studies
Archbishop Elias Chacour
Melkite Catholic Archbishop of Akka, Haifa, Nazareth and all Galilee; Founder, Mar Elias Educational Institutions
Dr. Mercy Oduyoye
Founder, The Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians
Dr. Ernie Regehr
Co-Founder, Project Ploughshares
Ms. Karuna Roy
Coordinator, HIV/AIDS Program, Church of North India
Rev. Dr. Setri Nyomi
General Secretary, The World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC)
Rev. Dr. Clifton Kirkpatrick
Stated Clerk of the Presbyterian Church (USA)
Rev. Nangula E. Kathindi
General Secretary, Council of Churches in Namibia
The Very Rev. Dr. John Dunlop
Former Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland; peace activist
Dr. David Pandy-Szekeres
General Director of Schools for the Hungarian Reformed Church of the sub-Carpathian Ukraine
Dr. Elsa Tamez
Professor of Biblical Theology, Seminario Biblico Latinoamericano, San-Jose, Costa Rica; women’s advocate
Rev. John Bell
Church of Scotland, on behalf of Iona Community; composer of hymns; inner-city youth worker
Rev. Héctor Méndez
Pastor of the First Presbyterian-Reformed Church in Cuba; ecumenist
Rev. Dr. John Fife
Past Moderator, PCUSA; co-leader of Sanctuary Movement for Central American refugees
Rev. Dr. Daniel Szabo
Chief Curator, Hungarian Reformed Church
Rev. Dr. Timothy Njoya
Minister, Presbyterian Church of East Africa, Kenya
Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu
President of the All Africa Conference of Churches; Nobel Laureate
Rev. Dr. John McIntosh and Dr. Clarabeth McIntosh
Minority Rights leaders with The Korean Christian Church in Japan
Rev. Russell Self
Presbyterian missionary; Bible Society leader
Rev. Glenda B. Hope
Inner City Minister in San Francisco
Rev. Barbel Wartenburg-Potter
Theologian; advocate against injustice; ecumenist
Ms. Barbara Jackman
Canadian advocate for refugee and immigration rights
Mr. Gabriel Habibe
General Secretary, Middle East Council of Churches
Rev. Dr. Byers Naude
General Secretary, South African Council of Churches; anti-apartheid activist
Rev. Dr. C.M. Kao
General Secretary, Presbyterian Church in Taiwan
Most Reverend Edward Scott
Archbishop, Primate, Anglican Church of Canada
Rev. Dr. In Ha Lee
Minister, The Korean Christian Church in Japan
Rev. Dr. Roy G. Neehall
General Secretary, Caribbean Conference of Churches
- Ms. Annemarie Klassen (convener), the Rev. Ruth Houtby, the Rev. Shahrzad Kandalaft, Ms. Janette McIntosh, Ms. Anne Saunders, the Rev. Gordon Timbers.
- Ex Officio: The Rev. Ian Ross-McDonald, General Secretary, Life and Mission Agency, the Rev. Stephen Kendall, Principal Clerk of the General Assembly, the Rev. Dr. Glynis Williams, Associate Secretary, International Ministries, Life and Mission Agency (secretary)